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PRSA Houston ePRo August 2010

Welcome to the month edition of ePRo , the electronic newsletter of the Houston chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA Houston). Dive in and let us know your thoughts!

Wednesday: Texas Tribune Editor on PR’s Role in the Future of Nonprofit Journalism

Can Evan Smith and his colleagues at The Texas Tribune save watchdog journalism in Texas? And what does its new nonprofit model mean for the state’s media relations practitioners?

Smith, CEO and editor of The Texas Tribune and former president and editor in chief of Texas Monthly, will discuss the year-old media outlet’s mission to promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, politics, government, and other matters of statewide concern. In addition to publishing the work of its seasoned staff online, The Texas Tribune partners with organizations such as the Houston Chronicle and the University of Texas on research and investigative reporting projects.

Smith joined The Texas Tribune in August 2009 after 18 years with Texas Monthly. A New York native, Smith holds a master’s degree in journalism from the Medill School at Northwestern University and is a founding co-chair of the Texas Film Hall of Fame.

A New Member Orientation will take place prior to the luncheon. Houston Chapter President Stephanie Dedeaux and key committee chairs will share how being involved in PRSA Houston benefits your career and the profession.


We encourage you to attend this orientation and enrich your knowledge, contacts and involvement in the Houston chapter.


Please RSVP to Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717; you must register for the luncheon separately.


Date:           September 1, 2010

Time:           11 a.m. New Member Orientation
                   11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Luncheon

Location:      Briar Club

Contact:   Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717, for event information
                and sponsorship opportunities



Free ‘September Sipper’ Mixer


Start celebrating Labor Day weekend a little early with your PR pals Sept. 2 at PRSA Houston’s fun, free September Sipper event.
Admission is free to with advance on-line registration. Hurry, as space is limited.


This mixer is generously provided by Flora & Muse Bistro and Bar, who will welcome guests with light bites, a complimentary first beverage and door prizes.


Flora & Muse is a new bar/lounge/café concept with a whimsical, neo-Victorian setting encompassing numerous indoor and alfresco seating vignettes. Opening mid-August, PRSA Houston members will be among the first Houstonians to experience this soon-to-be Houston hotspot.


Register to Attend (it's free!)


Date:           September 2, 2010

Time:           5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Location:      Flora & Muse 
                   (Town & Country CITYCENTRE) Directions


Contact:       David Casey, 713-560-9721



Judges Needed for PRSA Cincinnati Event


We are looking for PRSA Houston members, especially Accredited members, to volunteer to judge PRSA Cincinnati’s Excalibur Award entries.


We were thankful to have PRSA Cincinnati help judge our Excalibur Awards this year. Now, it’s our turn to return the favor.


Judging will take place Saturday, September 25, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at FKM near the Galleria. (Directions) Breakfast and lunch will be provided. 


This volunteer effort is a great opportunity to network with other PRSA Houston members as well as help another PRSA chapter in-need.


Please submit your interest by Wednesday, Sept. 22.


Contact:       Ed Davis


PR Day Keynote Speakers Announced
PRSA Houston has confirmed two of the PR and communications industry’s finest to headline its annual PR Day event Nov. 30 at the Hyatt Regency Downtown.


Becca Cason Thrash, a Houston PR pioneer, philanthropist and co-founder of Paper City magazine, will be this year’s Breakfast Keynote speaker. (Photo credit: Dave Rossman, Houston Chronicle) 

Paul Taaffe
, global CEO and Chairman of Hill & Knowlton, will be the Lunch Keynote speaker.


Read more about Thrash and Taaffe on the PR Day page.


Attendees of this year’s PR Day event, themed: PRSA: Promoting Relationships, Surviving Adversity, will be able to gain great insight into communications and public relations strategies from these two dynamic industry professionals. Both keynotes will be speaking to this year’s theme but will bring different perspectives based on their unique knowledge and expertise within the industry. 


PR Day is one of Houston’s premiere annual professional development events, offering something for everyone - whether you’re just starting out or you’ve got your fair share of war stories to tell. It's a great time to get involved in PRSA Houston to build relationships crucial to your career. 


Special thanks go out to our early commitment sponsors:


Conference Kit - CenterPoint Energy

Lunch Keynote - Hill and Knowlton

Swag Bag - Business Wire

Scholarship - Shell, Disc, Inc.

Exhibitor - PR Newswire, Customer Research InternationalVMS, Texas Press Clippings

Lagniappe - Whitney and Eyelit Designs


We also appreciate our in-kind sponsors Graphique, Flowers by Nino, Perfect Touch Linens, DiscPro Printing & Graphics and Encore Printstore.


Several PR Day sponsorships are still available, including the Breakfast Keynote Sponsor! Download our Sponsorship Guide for details, and visit the PR Day page for complete event information.


Interested in helping plan this year’s PR Day? Join the 2010 Planning Committee!


Contacts:    PR Day Chair Lady Oliver, 832-866-6608


Communications Chairs - promotions, media

Kristi Krupala: (713) 792-2096;

Kim Miller:


Sponsorship Chairs - sponsorships, vendor exhibits, donations

Osjetta Gascey:

Angela Randolph:


Programming Chair - speakers, program

Cynthia Miller: (225) 610-0592;


Venue Logistics - exhibits, logistics, speaker travel

Meagan Stangle: (713) 243-8879;


Oct. 6: How PR-savvy CEO is Leading HAR

PRSA Houston welcomes one of Houston’s most PR-savvy chief executives to its Oct. 6 luncheon. Bob Hale, chief executive officer for Houston Association of Realtors (HAR), will address selling real estate and realtors through effective communication.


Despite a recession partially driven by a national real-estate bust, a month doesn’t pass without HAR making headlines with its home sales reports.


Hale not only champions HAR’s benefits to association members, he supports robust communications with consumers to help them understand the importance of including realtors in their real-estate transactions. Routinely recognized by trade media as one of America’s most influential people in real estate, Hale also received the 2010 Communication Leadership Award from IABC Houston.


Hale’s enthusiastic belief in all types of traditional and social media helps drive a million unique visitors a month to and makes HAR the largest organization of its type in the nation.

Register now


Date:        October 6, 2010

Time:        11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Location:   Briar Club


Contact:   Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717, for event information
                and sponsorship opportunities


Thanks to our October Luncheon sponsor



Nov. 3: UH's Road to Tier One: What's Helping Pave the Way?

Bring your friends and colleagues to hear the inside story about UH’s campaign to achieve Tier One status.
University of Houston System chancellor and University of Houston (UH) president Renu Khator, Ph.D., will share these insights, as well as the importance of The Jack J. Valenti School of Communication and the growth of communications majors with Public Relations emphasis at UH.


Appointed in January 2008, Dr. Khator is the first Indian immigrant to head a comprehensive public research university in the United States. Under her leadership, the University of Houston has experienced record-breaking research funding and private support. In 2009, UH brought in $110 million in research awards and began construction on a 75-acre Energy Research Park, the Cougar football team ranked among the Top 25 and a pathway to Tier-One status was created by the state legislature and approved by Texas voters.


UH serves more than 61,000 students, has an annual budget that exceeds $1.25 billion and generates a $3 billion impact on the Houston area’s economy, annually.


PRSA Houston will generously donate all luncheon proceeds to the Public Relations Foundation of Houston (PRFH), whose mission is to enhance the quality of education by providing scholarships for students studying communications and/or public relations at local universities.


You can make an individual contribution to support the PRFH by making a donation at the luncheon with your check or credit card. Visit the PRFH site for more information.


Register today  



Date:        November 3, 2010

Time:        11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Location:   Briar Club
Contact:   Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717, for event information
                and sponsorship opportunities
Thanks to our November Luncheon sponsor

PRSA Houston Blog Bite


“While working in the mortgage industry during the now waning housing crisis, being informed is crucial to establishing and maintaining employee morale during these troubling times. It’s hard to put forth your best effort and focus on the job at hand when the possibility of unemployment and the terrors of job hunting loom over your head. Nothing is neutral; even to stay silent during periods of uncertainty sends a strong message to the workforce. I have no way of knowing whether our CEO is familiar with Grossman or the ideas he shared, but my company’s leader seems to understand how powerful the messages he sends to his employees can be.” Read more on PRSA Houston’s Blog site


An excerpt from a the blog entry “Why Leaders Can’t NOT Communicate – Even as a Mortgage Company CEO” by Jason Saenz, public relations writer/editor, Cornerstone Mortgage Company, about what he learned from PRSA Houston’s July luncheon.



Passionate About PR? Bloggers Wanted


Have an opinion on a PR issue you want to share?  Share your viewpoint with hundreds of PR professionals in the Houston area, and blog for PRSA Houston.  Become a trusted resource on some of the great PR issues of our time — from BP to teabaggers and beyond.  PRSA provides the forum.  You provide the thought leadership. Your followers provide the dialogue. 

: Mike Wysatta for more information.


Welcome to Our New Members 
(July 27-Aug. 23, 2010)


Jill Sinden

Michella Cross

Carrie Stallwitz, Witz! PR (reinstated)

Adelina Espat, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Laura Nathan-Garner, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Tina Jaekel, DiCentral

Gretchen Krueger, Krueger& Public Relations

Sarah Newson, MD Anderson Cancer Center (reinstated)


Thank You to Our Renewing Members
(July 26-Aug. 23, 2010)


Kimberly Abey, Spotlight Creative LLC

Frank Agraz

Karen Barbier, University of Houston-Clear Lake

Donna Boyer, Marathon Oil Company

Susan Burnell, APR, Imagination Inc.

Dagmar Climo, PCCA

Ed Davis, III, PRSA Houston Board member, United Way of Greater Houston

Tanya Doescher

Osjetta Gascey-Morris, Texas Children’s Health Plan

Wendy Gottsegen, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Elizabeth Grimm, APR, Liz Grimm Public Relations

Jessie Haynes, APR, Beaumont Independent School District

L.K. Herlong

Rose Maltby, Parker Drilling Company

Michelle McCormick, PRWSA Houston President-Elect, Bracewell & Giuliani LLP

Celia Morales, Houston Image Group

Susan Richardson, Southwestern Energy

Kari Short, APR, Short Communications

Jennifer Silva, Chevron

Tricia Singer, APR, Shell

Gale Smith, The Methodist Hospital System

Jennifer Snyder, Harris County Medical Society

Lindsey Threlkeld, EnerVest, Ltd

Shauna Tysor, Houston Ballet

Carol Ward, APR, Carol Ward Public Relations

Ronda Wendler, Texas Medical Center News


Luncheon Sponsorships Offer Good Marketing Value 

Are you a company looking for exposure to more than 2,000 communications professionals? PRSA Houston has
monthly luncheon sponsorship opportunities available.

Thanks to MedTouch for sponsoring out August luncheon, featuring UTMB director of media relations Raul Reyes. Other sponsorships are available. Luncheon sponsors get the following benefits for $500:  

  • mention in promotional e-mail sent to database of 2000-plus subscribers
  • mention and text link in ePRo, the PRSA Houston newsletter sent to 2000-plus subscribers
  • text/Logo link on PRSA Houston Web site for one month
  • ability to distribute materials to all luncheon attendees
  • table in room to talk with luncheon attendees before and after the event
  • speaking opportunity at the luncheon (no more than 3 minutes)
  • one free lunch registration at the President's table; others available at $30 member rate
  • One time use of an electronically provided member list of physical addresses for all 440 PRSA Houston members.

Luncheon sponsorships do not include PR Day, for which we offer several exclusive PR Day sponsorship packages. Read more about this premiere event on the PR Day Page. Multi-event sponsorship agreements are also available.

Contact:       Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717



Get More for Your Membership – Submit a Business Directory Listing


Several firms have asked PRSA Houston how they can get more from their membership. Involvement in PRSA Houston is the best option, but a firm should also have a listing on the Business Directory

Thank you Nancy Mills, APR, The Mills Agency, for becoming a new advertiser in the Business Directory
. For the low price of $100 for a year, the Bayou City Public Relations name, contact information and the company’s specialties are noted on one of the top sites Googled for “public relations & Houston.” Posting your business in our online directory also helps PRSA Houston better field calls it receives asking for specific expertise.


Contact:       Paula Ruth, APR, 281-870-1717



Job Hunting? Post Your Resume, Search Listings in PRSA Houston’s Job Bank


Are you a job seeker? Are you a company looking for fresh talent? Look first to PRSA Houston’s Job Bank for new PR and communications opportunities.

It’s easy an easy, free feature for members to take advantage of and a low-cost option for businesses (Only $100)! Post a position or apply for a job quickly.


PRSA Houston also has a free resume search feature in its site, where members can post their resumes for employers looking for talent. Employers may go to the same link and search the resumes posted. This is a completely free service that has been offered by PRSA Houston for more than a year. You may also sign up for a free career newsletter that tells of recent postings. Log-on to PRSA Houston’s site and add this option to your profile.  

EPRo is the electronic newsletter of the Houston Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA Houston). The deadline for submitting items for the September newsletter is Thurday, Sept. 23. Send to

Author: Erin Schwartz
Phone: (713) 563-4920
Category: newsletter | Sub Category: newsletter